Walking the dog towards Mill Lane. Financial District, New York City.
I have been thinking a lot about different visions of New York City a lot lately which I wrote about recently in this post about everyone’s different version of New York City in their minds. I had an interesting interview for a project I am being considered for a few weeks ago where I found myself talking about what I try to convey about New York City with my photography and writing.
It was interesting to talk about it face to face (over Skype) rather than write about it because in a sort of stream of consciousness way I had to explain to someone who had never been to New York City how I try to show how I experience New York City on a regular basis via my own views of it colored by falling in love with a combination of streetscapes in classic film noir cinema, futuristic sci-fi city environments in literature and film, and years of traversing New York City on foot.
A few nights ago, I watched a documentary about Woody Allen and there was a segment in it that resonated with me deeply which is no surprise since I am a huge fan of the Annie Hall and Manhattan era Woody Allen films. Martin Scorcese, the director of masterpieces such as: Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Goodfellas and Gangs of New York talks about Woody Allen’s extreme nostalgia for the present that is evident in Allen’s film Manhattan. He states that for Woody Allen it is as if New York City is constantly alive and continually evolving but Allen’s New York City is an entirely different planet from his own. The documentary switches over to Woody Allen who then states: “I wanted to show New York in a very beautiful way, the way I see it. I never had any interest in showing it except through my rose colored glasses; my romanticized view of it.”
There is definitely a romanticized element that is evident in my photography of New York City. When I walk from my apartment on the Lower East Side through Chinatown and Soho or up through the East Village towards midtown, I am bombarded with memories and desire to capture the fragments of life and architecture that, for me, tug at the visions of New York City I have in my own mind. I hope that one day if and when I have the means to travel I will be able to do the same which each place I explore and experience.
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